About this Show

[untitled]

NETWORK

DURATION
00:30:00

RATING

SCANNED IN

SOURCE
Comcast Cable

TUNER
Channel 89 (615 MHz)

VIDEO CODEC
mpeg2video

AUDIO CODEC
ac3

PIXEL WIDTH
544

PIXEL HEIGHT
480

TOPIC FREQUENCY

San Francisco 6, Antonini 2, Us 2, At&t 1, The City 1, Usingis 1, Mr. Crawford 1, Cupertino 1, Swansons 1, Richie 1,
Borrow a DVD
of this show
  SFGTV2    [untitled]  

    March 10, 2011
    4:30 - 5:00pm PST  

4:30pm
>> good afternoon, commissioners. on behalf of the san francisco housing action coalition. our endorsement committee look at this project a year ago and loved it. we like the housing. we like it is rare that we see a project that is emblematic of the discussion of parking in the san francisco. our perspective of our patrons that the neighborhood is not look at this as a parking facility. this is less than half full now. this is not successful.
4:31pm
this is obsolete. i would be nervous coming here if there was a waiting list to get into this place. at the same time, they are upset that this is oversubscribed and difficult to obtain. this is the problem that we have around parking in this city. if the neighborhood is not valued this as a parking resources, why should you? >> is there any additional public comment in support of the
4:32pm
project sponsor? seeing none, you have two minutes each for rebuttal. >> just to refute the points made. i just might explain the effect of the status of monthly parking.
4:33pm
going back to my analogy for the benefit, they did not use the amount for public parking. this would increase your parking. this would still generate more funds than the proposed project. there are no vacancies on high street as it is so there is a demand for commercial units. this should still be kept and commercial use the zone. a thank-you. >> i would like to remind the commission that we are not
4:34pm
questioning the sensitivity of the design, we are questioning the use. you have heard enough serious issues for the commission to take discretionary review and continue the project. all of the issues that you heard today, the density of the neighborhood, the mixed needs, the transit hill first, -- russian hill first, transit last. there are comments of all sorts of perspective. that is what you need to look at. it just to put in perspective, the view from the street is this -- this is saying the massive building and we need to think about that as will get the overall project.
4:35pm
you should look at the use of this building. the project that you heard prior to this, the truth is, there are people that drive cars to at&t where there is mass transit and you took on a parking project. i am not clear what the differences. >> project sponsor. >> thank you commissioners. this area has been planned. the housing is above the small
4:36pm
ground floor space. if we had been proposing this, we would have been laughed out of the city. this is not a sustainable development and a couple of points, on the transit, these buses are half a block away. on the monthly parking come on this did not begin until 2008, before 2008, this was a repair garage. it has only been in the last three years that has served the parking. this was a small temporary use. there was a temporary use of
4:37pm
that allowed for short-term working for patrons. we just heard yesterday from -- oi think we need to deal with te third floor addition. i would ask to the senate administrator to let us hold for a week a two to figure out a good way to save the corner of the addition. there is no other property that is affected by the third floor addition. because of the buildings is 100% lot coverage, there is no rear yard. this really heights the third floor addition from all vantage points.
4:38pm
this does not impact the light -- >> thank you. the public hearing is closed. >> this is like a lot of things in san francisco, this is on- street. we have cupertino of electric in san francisco. i am a friend of parking. we really appreciate your testimony. when we hear testimony from those who don't believe they will have cars in the future, you might agree. we have to look at the specific use. there has been a lot of garages
4:39pm
that of closed over the years because you don't service cars as often as you do. they could not support the use of the facility as a repair facility only. there is a private property situation. there are many ideas that they have about a use which would include perhaps electric car charging stations. ultimately, that would mean that the public, maybe this city if you have to buy this from the property owner and convert it into that use. that has a value and this is probably greater being used as
4:40pm
condominiums and that is the way it works. i am not saying that is necessarily the way we go but the reality is that is certainly a factor. some of the things that were brought about come on this is two floors and this would be a little bit over two floors with the addition. that is the typography of the street. i was not impressed looking at the polls. there are some issues regarding the property and i'm not sure if those are property line windows or not but that is something that we can look at and see what is going on about that situation where it comes down closer. a few other observations, they are doing a good job. it has been brought up as creating some parking places in
4:41pm
the street. that will be welcomed for additional parking places. there are the seven parking places. it is might open up some additional parking places for use by people in the neighborhood who might want to purchase them everywhere. one of the things will be the utilization factor because i am hearing and no one is disputing that this is underutilized now. this is not being used for monthly renters at anywhere near its capacity. whether that is a product of the price charged or more readily if it was lower or whether it this is realistic. this is underutilized. i am sympathetic because this is
4:42pm
a tough place to park. if people have businesses, they can not only cater to those who are strong enough to get up the hill. you have to have parking for that. this is a good access for them to come into for the condo rather than having them come off a tight street. i have never quite been a believer in this, we should try to make things blend been more closely. if you look at the back of the opera house, that was in addition done about 25 years
4:43pm
ago. this was done around the same time and these blend in seamlessly. there's no reason why you can make this addition that is sympathetic to the windows. that is the parking situation. we will see what the commissioners have to say. quarks i would think that i would agree with commissioner antonini this time but he went a different way. that is very interesting. he makes a very powerful case for supporting the class
4:44pm
housing and while a new construction, i often question that. i happen to live in that area for the last 8 years. i know the change this area has gone through. the standard buildings to not provide parking. you struggle on the street or i
4:45pm
don't know what you do. it is difficult for the diverse neighborhood to deal with it. we wanted to let a carbon footprint where you circle the block for two hours. we had a very robust discussion earlier today on our project on townsend and richie and we supported the idea of adequate parking and in support of be eating and drinking was not a good idea. i felt that i was supporting something which is analogous to what we are doing. i got the 2010 census data. we have a population of -- we have 345,000 occupied in its.
4:46pm
we have 31,000 unoccupied housing units. why would we take seven units at this time given the huge amount of unoccupied units. we are not driving the efficiency and housing and adding these units. having said that, i'm not in support of this project as this is proposed. i appreciate the neighbors and the varied pieces of information and to increase my knowledge about the situation. i believe that this of metal that is in front of us prior to coming into this room was
4:47pm
deficient in terms of disclosure about what this building really wanted to do. i told mr. crawford that. this is on fair to the commission. this is a policy issue that is a neighborhood specific issue. this project is not really disclose their architectural intent is for me like i feel cheated and i am not supportive of it. >> i wanted to share some of my thoughts on the application. this is a noncompliant structure that is not comply with the zoning district. they're changing the use and therefore intensifying this.
4:48pm
this is also a non complying use. this is very prescriptive about what uses are needed and allow full. -- allowable. residential is the primary use. other alternatives would be in some institutional uses or public use. also the idea of existing parking, i understand that is a benefit for the community and they would be impacted by the removal will -- impacted by the removal. this is completely up to the project sponsor. those are some of the thoughts that i have. thank you.
4:49pm
>> i am having a problem with this one. -- used to joke that he had to remember in front of which fire plug that his car was parked. i don't think that he was joking. and i am not against possible developer this building but i am not totally convinced that this is the right development. i would have liked to have known more about the former uses. i know that this was an actual repair garages. i don't know enough about the
4:50pm
interaction between the current owners and the businesses in the area and how the garage has been promoted, whether there are discounts on parking of any time with the use of the surrounding businesses. none of that and formation has been supplied to me. i don't have enough information to go on. >> by a am a little surprised because i used to live on high street. i am very familiar with russian hill. all of these places are places i have frequented. i don't drive to russian hell
4:51pm
because i know you can't park. this is what we talked about in other areas of the city, we discourage people from driving to places that you don't drive in. taxicabs are cheaper than what you pay for parking for a night. when we are talking about transit first and holding the other areas to a higher standard, the whole premise is that you make it more difficult and hopefully people will take transit. this seems counter to all of the areas. in general, i don't think that the best use for a piece of land is parking. i could probably make a lot of money but i don't think that
4:52pm
that is the best use. i was excited about the use of this building. it is very rare that we see that. i think this is the designation of this building. i thought it was a cool concept to take a building like this and make it housing. there are lots of old buildings that have been turned into housing. we don't have that in a san francisco. on the issue of housing, we will always have a housing problem and i don't think that the seven units will solve any problem. i don't think that we need more luxury housing. to the extent that you can get people to be in more luxurious places, that is always a good thing.
4:53pm
no one has commented on the building. i would be interested in what the commissioners expertise is. i am not against turning this into another use. this is not a conditional use. i think that is the context in which we need to look at that project. i feel a different standard for this neighborhood then what we hold other neighborhoods to. >> i generally support growth and change but i have a difficult time supporting this
4:54pm
project. my family and i have probably had countless ice creams at swansons. i don't buy the idea that this is being used for parking. i feel that it is used by d staff here by probably businesses. what i support and what i don't feel comfortable about is that it has strong use at night for the restaurants. this stimulates business in neighborhoods in san francisco. the parking necessary for those restaurants, i have a hard time supporting this. >> i want to repeat what the zoning administrator said. the new owner could never force those additional parking spaces which would be leased or rented.
4:55pm
this particular project applies for two spaces per unit and i find that the incorrect way of doing it. if this turns out to be a condominium, which is what kind of sounds like. those parking spaces can be sold for a huge amount of money. this is what i don't find transparent and clear about this proposal. >> i agree in a little bit with commissioner more. i think these units would do quite well because they are a very desirable area.
4:56pm
they would be highly sought after. much of the vacancies we have are for a lot of reasons that have nothing to do. the quality is in bad shape. some are kept off the market by landlords. some are dealing with the laws we have. that is a whole separate issue. she makes a good point about the possibility and i will proceed see what the commissioners -- there are some possible things that could be done. we talk about the parking and we talk about the 14 spaces and perhaps there might be a way to change it and devote some of the parking spaces to use by the neighborhood and something like that. maybe a way to work it that might make it more acceptable.
4:57pm
>> i agree with almost everything every commissioner said, so i am confused. i probably agree with commissioner antonini and perhaps miguel to continue it with some additional information forthcoming. testimony from the adjacent property owner was more directed to the variance. i think that that should be volunteered by the project sponsor to work out some kind of solution for the light well situation. i think that is essential. parking, i would like more information on the kind of history of the property itself. i think that goes along with
4:58pm
commissioner more. historically, was it a garage? what kind of parking did it have? all of that kind of stuff would be interested -- interesting to have. i don't know if we can ask for parking monthly rates or not. it seems as though if it went from what was alleged to be 200, that might be a factor and why there are only 30 people usingis at the moment. there are car share spaces here. i think additional spaces that end up being of a ratio is excessive and we should stick to one to one parking if this will
4:59pm
be approved at all. i was looking for a bike parking on the lower floor but i think that should be added. my biggest issue is at the front elevation. if the project is going to move ahead, i don't know what the vote would be. i think the front elevation, one of the gentleman who testified earlier pointed out that as a grudge building, i think that the openings are extremely important on the front elevation. the proposed solution to block off the bottom portions, for me, although it retains the character of the garages, it makes it look like it was formally a warehouse. the difference is that for example, you have